cincinnati photography

How I turned a photo in to a Polar Express Dream! Cincinnati Ohio Photographer

When I was little, I’d say roughly about grade 2 or 3, our class was told to sit down for a story. We all sat down on the big rug on the floor by the chalkboard. The lights were dimmed a little and my teacher began to read us a story that to this day is still one of my favorites.

The story has to do with a little boy who is picked up by a train that magically appears in front of his house before Christmas. He is taken on a wild ride that night and is given a bell with no ringer when it’s over.

Know what story I’m talking about? ( I hope so!)

If you don’t its The Polar Express.

A Christmas Classic in my eyes.

The day the read us that story I was just so captivated by it and the idea. Our teacher even gave us little bells at the end of the day to take home- I still have mine.

This year I wanted to bring a little of that feeling back and provide a mini that more or less brought it to life once again for everyone.

I had my friend bring her two awesome kids over to test out my idea. I told them to wear their pj’s and come over ready to look amazed.

The funny thing about photographing 1-3 year olds is they have their own timeframes and you really can’t tell them what to do when it comes to a photo. If you look at the video close our littlest one kept walking off, being super focused on low hanging Christmas tree things.

Good thing I only need one good shot to make it work haha.

My main focus for the edit for this was to make sure the kids looked like they fit into the photo AND that they looked like it was shot at night. Since colors look different in the dark, especially red, that meant I had to mute the tones a little and add a lot of shadowing.

I also added a fun snow video overlay to the end photo. Like I said in one of my last posts, it’s becoming a favorite thing to do. You can add them as a facebook profile photo too. Definitely something I’ll be offering out from now on as a nice little extra treat ;)

All in all I love how it came out and it’s something I’m sure I’ll bring back next year but a little earlier in the season. I’m also thinking photos with the grinch next year as that is another movie I love for the holidays.

If you have fun ideas for holiday photos let me know in the comments!

Happy Holidays everyone!


Making of an ICE QUEEN- Cincinnati Ohio Photoshoot Dream Session

I LOVE when I get to make costumes for a session. I love even more when it all comes together to create something AMAZING as a final product.

A couple weeks ago I wanted to revisit my Ice Queen look I did for myself way back when ( really like a little over a year ago) and see if I could make it even better than before.

Peep the old look below

Say Yes To Jess makes ICE QUEEN look in Photoshoot Dream Session in Cincinnati.jpg

Just like last time I wanted the costume pieces to also be made out of hot glue. The crown, necklace and little pieces on my eyebrows are all made from hot glue in the photo above… and maybe a hint of foil and clear confetti….. AND glitter.

This time however, I wanted to be a little less sparkly and a lot more badass, if you will.

I created a crown that looked a lot different than the previous one with tiny “ice sickles” that ran up the top to give it a more frozen feel and put some (what I’m calling it) “Glue lace” on the top as well.

I also made a top that was supposed to resemble lace or some type of super delicate fabric with hanging sleeves to go with it, also made out of the “glue lace”.

I also have to give a big shoutout here to my BFF who is usually down to do whatever weird photo idea I come up with and volunteered to be my model for the shoot. Honestly being a model for something I do is pretty awesome. You get a cool costume, an awesome time AND some kickass photos when you’re done.

(You also get that if you do a Dream Session as well ;)- just saying)

Peep the behind the scenes video below

During the edit I added fake white eyelashes, made her eyes a little bigger whitened her lips and added some smoothing for effect. I also added in some still snow to give the look that it was very cold and foggy where she was.

Peep the Speed Edit below

I absolutely LOVE how the image came out. I also added in a fake snow overlay video to make it look like it was snowing. This in my personal opinion really blew it out of the water for me. So much so that I’ve started adding overlays to a lot of things for added effect- because I’m always a little extra.

I think it was a total game changer from last time to now. Maybe I’ll start doing an Ice Queen image each year. Ya know. Test my skills and make it even cooler every time and keep it all made with mostly hot glue. I already have some ideas for it if I decide to do it again- probably going to do it again.

April Ice queen WM.jpg

Let me know what you think in the comments and if I should do another Ice Queen image next year.

Want to book your own Session? Message me to find out how!